SWANAGE and Wareham Rugby Club will open its doors to local women next month in a bid to help them free their inner warriors.

Developed by England Rugby, the Free Your Inner Warrior campaign is aimed at women between the ages of 18 and 35 to encourage greater female participation in contact rugby across the country.

Between August 18 and September 3, 174 Warrior Camps will take place at rugby clubs across England, encouraging women to step out of their comfort zone and challenge themselves through rugby – all you need to take part are your trainers and work-out gear.

Swanage and Wareham will be holding their event at Bestwall on September 1, starting at 6.30pm.

Team coach Lily Carr said: “We’re going to do a training session for an hour and then a gin and cheese charity night and will be combining the two of those together.

“Recruitment is the main reason for doing it. We will have people that are on the fence and think ‘I’m not sure if I want to do it’ but they can have a fun evening, rather than anything serious.

“We started in January with the women’s team and we’ve got 22 players at the moment. We’ve done quite well.

“We want to keep it fun and as an introduction, rather than anything too serious.”

More than 2,600 women took part in 150 Warrior Camps held across the country in May, vastly exceeding the RFU’s target of 1,500 players.

A full 7,000 women have attended rugby training sessions over the past 18 months, with 3,000 arriving as newcomers to the game.

There has also been a 48 per cent conversion rate of new rugby players becoming club members and 41 new women’s teams founded at senior level.

The RFU are striving to continue expanding the number of females involved in the sport, hoping to draw inspiration from England’s Women’s World Cup campaign and the continued success of the inner warrior campaign is a top priority.

Steve Grainger, RFU rugby development director, said: “The Meet Your Inner Warrior campaign has given hundreds of new players the chance to try rugby through Warrior Camps, introducing them to the basics of the game.

“Almost 50 per cent of these new rugby players have joined local rugby clubs since the camps began in January, helping to form 41 new adult women’s teams.

“It’s encouraging to see a large number of our Warrior Camp women playing rugby regularly following their taster sessions. It certainly demonstrates rugby’s appeal for women, and the fact that we are making the sport available for females across the country.”

“With the Women’s Rugby World Cup in Ireland taking place, I hope the Red Roses’ performance will inspire women and girls across the nation to take part in the sport.”

The Warrior Camps are fun, non-committal rugby taster sessions for women considering taking up contact rugby. To sign up for a Warrior camp near you and to free your Inner Warrior, go to www.EnglandRugby.com/InnerWarrior